Waters Warm Up: Take Safety Precautions Now to Prevent Drowning!

LIBERTY, February 25, 2014 - According to a study in the journal of Pediatrics, more than 1,000 children die each year unfortunately from drowning. In 2012, 71 children died from drowning in Texas. Statistics also show that if that child survives, it is very possible that the child will suffer from brain damage or a potential long - term disability. Children at the highest risk of drowning are between the ages of 0-4.

It is truly critical that steps are taken to prevent these unnecessary drowning’s from occurring. Listed below are a couple of steps that can be taken by parents to decrease the chances of drowning.

· It is a wonderful idea to enroll your child in swimming lessons. Doing this for children under 4 years of age, could potentially decrease the likelihood of drowning by 88% according to the journal of Pediatrics.
· If you have a pool in your backyard, be sure it is fenced in on all sides with self-closing, self-locking gates opening outward. It is very important that the barrier should be at least 4 feet tall to prohibit children from climbing over it. If your house acts as one side of the barrier, install an alarm system to alert you if your child goes outside.
· If drain covers are missing from the pool, do not use the pool. This can serve as a trap for long hair, arms, legs and fingers. Things such as this can get stuck in the drains current and potentially pull a child under water.
· Most importantly, make sure that there is adult supervision at the pool at all times. When you are finished swimming, please remove all pool toys and take them with you. Unfortunately, this might entice a young child to try and reach for the toy and fall into the pool.

Keeping these steps in mind will help to make spring and summer safe and fun! Enjoy!

This article was brought to you by the agencies and organizations that make up Liberty County’s Child Fatality Review Team that helps educate our residents on ways to prevent child deaths and lower child mortality. For additional information, please contact Alexis Cordova, County Extension Agent for Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Liberty County at 936-334-3230 or anocrdova@ag.tamu.edu.


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